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Meet the team

Founding members:


Nicola Beazley / (she/her)


Musician, Academic & Educator

Rosie Hood / (she/her)

Musician & Educator


Sarah Jones / (she/her)

Arts Education Manager & Event Producer


Emily Portman / (she/her)

Musician, Songwriter & Educator

Join us!

We would love for you to join the Esperance community via our Facebook group! We welcome anyone who supports gender equality and wants to work together to bring positive changes to the folk scene.

  • Esperance Facebook Group


Mission Statement:

Esperance is a grassroots collective of people who wish to discuss and address gender equality issues in the English folk scene. 


We aim to increase awareness and understanding of gender-related barriers, support people who experience gender-based discrimination, and facilitate conversations that lead to positive change. 


Our vision is for a change in culture in order to create a safer, more inclusive community and an equal, sustainable future for the folk scene in England.  


  • Talk and listen to people about the gender-related barriers they face in the folk scene

  • Promote gender equality in the English folk scene

  • Support the development of safe and inclusive spaces within the English folk scene 

  • Listen and educate about respect and appropriate behaviour 

  • Increase awareness and understanding of gender-related inequalities and barriers 

  • Facilitate positive and constructive conversations

  • Enable people to flourish at different stages of their career without encountering gender-related barriers


Esperance was established in 2020, in response to reports of sexual violence by men in the folk and traditional music scenes in the UK and Ireland. We feel it is important to show the young women who came forward that they have been listened to and taken seriously and that they have instigated a movement for change in England. We are proud to be affiliated with The BIT Collective in Scotland and we fully support their #TradStandsWithHer campaign.  


The name Esperance means hope or positive expectation, and connects to folk collector Mary Neal’s Espérance Club of the 1890s. 

Photos Camilla Greenwell & Caroline Hood

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